Last night the subject of gambling came up between me and a couple of guys. In New York we have just passed a referendum, which allows private entities the ability to operate upstate, non-indian casinos, where it was previously prohibited. That’s not what we were discussing.

No it was the demon of gambling itself (not sure of the sex, but it is pretty darn alluring.) Money for virtually nothing usually does entice me. It only took me to be scammed a couple of times before I became smarter and learned to look before I lept. It seems someone that someone knew won $8,000 on a scratch off and within two weeks were broke again. They took the money and went right to the casino.

Which led to a conversation about temptation itself, the addiction, the phenomena of “first timers” always getting lucky. Stories were told of how track novices won daily doubles their first time betting on “the nags.” Instances where a person’s initial purchase when scratched revealed a winner were raised.

The conclusion was you can never beat the “house” over the long run unless you take the money and run. Or cheat… If you do cheat aren’t you really playing right into the hands of the one who really runs the “house?”

The subject of casinos that night was only mentioned, but whether they are built here or not, gambling has been ingrained in our society since playground, when you bet your buddy you could accomplish a difficult task in exchange for the loser footing the soda bill.

Many of today’s foremost thinkers understand that you cannot legislate away people’s urges. You can only aid in their enlightenment. As I was leaving someone mentioned that they liked poker, as long as there was a limit. We all agreed that maybe we should have a poker game soon.

“You fool, they dangle the jewel,

The trouble’s the bauble, the devil’s own tool.”

“The Fool” ~ Ron Vannostrand 1984 “Dazed By Our Lives,” the musical

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